Review: Mitosis by Brandon Sanderson

MitosisSeries: Reckoners #1.5
Published by: Gollancz
ISBN 13: 9781473209350
Published: October 2014
Pages: 110
Format reviewed: Hardcover from publisher
Site: Author Site
Goodreads: Book Page
Stars: Four out of Five

Mitosis is a short story (labelled as a novella) set between Steelheart and Firefight in the Reckoners series by Brandon Sanderson. Though the book itself is over a hundred pages, Mitosis itself is only about 50 or so – the rest are character sketches as though they come from David’s notes and findings on the Epics, and then a sneak preview of Firefight.

I’ve read and mostly enjoyed Steelheart, but have seen reviews from friends who haven’t, and they say that this short is still readable if you haven’t started the series and it actually made them want to go start it – so it’s doing its job. Parts are a little obscure or don’t mean as much to them as they would to someone who knows what happened in the first book, but overall its readable, so if you want to give the series a go to see if you like it, you can start here as it’s just 50 or so pages of your time.

Personally, as someone who’s read Steelheart, I found this basically good – it’s just like a chapter from one of the books, packed with action and sometimes witty dialogue. It’s very good at showing different powers and abilities, and it’s good to see the main character David get a little more confidence after what happened in the first book. Not all characters are present here – things don’t get resolved in this side story – so it’s a sneak preview at how Newcago (Chicago?) – the city where it’s set – is coping after such dramatic events.

Though this series is listed as young adult, I’d almost lean to something a bit in-between middle grade and young adult – it’s not quite there. It’s quite fun and despite how dramatic everything gets, it’s not very dark and doom and gloom.

Firefight comes out early next year. This is a nice little skip while we’re waiting, but otherwise I’d probably be a bit hesitate to pay what’s being asked in Australia for this ($17.99AU… yup) for what’s basically 50 pages. What a slap in the face.

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